A hidden profile task is a method of distributing information among members of a decision-making group, leaving the optimal decision alternative hidden from members unless they thoroughly pool their unique knowledge. This task is an important tool in understanding when and why groups make decisions that fall short of their potential. Today more than ever, decision-making groups are composed of members with different expert knowledge. The hope is that group members will thoroughly exchange information in their unique areas of expertise, helping the group to make an optimal decision. Unfortunately, research has shown that group discussion is an ineffective tool for pooling member expertise. Instead, group decisions tend to favor information that all the members knew before the discussion, thereby defeating the purpose of creating ...

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